It’s a rhetorical question, but can you really imagine how rock and pop music could have evolved without the United States Of America? If it wasn’t for indigenous music such as the blues, we wouldn’t have had rock’n’roll and all that came after, so it’s fair to say we owe the US a pretty hefty debt of gratitude when it comes to most musical genres. Celebrating – and sometimes critiquing – one of the biggest nations in the world, the best songs about America go some way towards repaying that debt.
Best Songs About America: 30 Rockers From The Free World
30: Damn Yankees: Don’t Tread On Me (1992)
Featuring Tommy Shaw (Styx), Ted Nugent (Amboy Dukes) and Jack Blades (Night Ranger), the explosive but short-lived rock supergroup Damn Yankees wore their political convictions with pride – even unfurling US flags onstage during the tour supporting their self-titled debut album, whose 1990 release coincided with the start of the first Persian Gulf War. The band amped up the rhetoric further on their second album, Don’t Tread, which featured the defiant Don’t Tread On Me (“Make love not war/Was your claim to fame/Now you’re takin’ me down/Well I won’t be tamed”), but while present-day listeners could take issue with the lyrical content, Damn Yankees’ sincerity was never in any doubt.